No one ever really talks about, or prepares you for, how the pain of losing someone close to you never really goes away....
Even as the days and years pass, you’re still going to think about and miss that person every single day.
It’s almost like the pain just becomes part of you, and somewhere along the way you learn to accept it or live with it.
While we each learn to cope and carry on in our own way, I want to share a couple of things that might help you along the way….
Last week my cousin lost her mother suddenly and my heart crumbled into a million pieces for her because I know how painful that loss and sadness can be.
I lost my own mom and grandmother just a few years ago, and I still feel the pain of their loss each day even years later.
I know her life is going to change forever and I wish there was a way I could help ease her pain.
Truthfully, there is no real way to ease that sadness and pain. Even with time, it will be there.
You can learn to find peace with it though.
Finding Peace in the Pain
First I want to prepare you… You might not feel the pain or sadness of loss right away. Initially you’re probably going to feel shocked and almost numb. It might not seem real. The first few days are a complete whirlwind.
You’re surrounded by people giving you so much love and helping you celebrate the beautiful life that’s gone too soon. You might even find yourself thinking this special person has just gone away for a few days… on vacation somewhere.
It’s ok to feel this way, it helps you ease into life without them and start imagining them in a better place.
But then a week passes and everything goes back to normal. Life goes on…. Or at least for everyone around you.
This is when things start to get real for you. Your normal has forever changed, and it might seem so unfair that everyone else can go back to living their life so easily.
This is where I encourage you to really embrace self compassion. It’s ok to feel this way, everyone handles loss in their own way and you have to give yourself permission to grieve the way you need to grieve.
It’s going to be a long journey of ups and downs. At this point rest is so important. Listen to your body and allow it to heal.
It’s really easy to try and push down the pain. To try and distract yourself from it. That’s what I did after I lost my mom…
She passed away suddenly and my heart broke not just because I lost my mom at such a young age, but because we were not on speaking terms at the end of her life.
My coping mechanism was to shut it out. I refused to let myself feel the pain and instead decided I would try to live my life for both of us. I filled up my calendar with as many exciting and happy things as possible, booked trips, poured my energy into my work… I did basically everything other than feel the loss.
I’m not saying this is bad, it helped me get through it and gave me a whole new perspective on life.
But here’s the tricky thing about loss and grief… you can only shut it out or distract yourself for so long.
It’s always there, lingering under the surface and you will never fully be able to enjoy your life until you face it head on.
A little over a year after my mom passed, my gram passed, and that’s when everything hit me like a ton of bricks. I’ve been forced to overcome relentless adversity ever since I was a young girl, but the sadness of this loss, it almost broke me.
Ways to get through it
The best advice I can give you is to care for yourself in a loving way after losing someone close to you. Allow yourself to actually feel the pain and the sadness. This is part of the healing process. As the sadness comes up, feel it rather than fighting it. The longer you fight it the more likely it is to cause inner turmoil and chaos in your life.
Talk to someone about what you are feeling. Grief counselors and therapists really do help you feel less alone during this time. I know it can be uncomfortable but it’s impactful.
If opening up to an actual person makes you uncomfortable initially I highly recommend a journal. I started my journal after my gram passed away. I missed her so much and all I wanted to do was talk to her. So I did in my journal. Whenever I missed her, or needed her advice on something, I would start to write. I would pull out my journal and write “Hi Gram..,” then let the words flow. It helped me immensely and I still do it years later.
Allow yourself to find some peace in the fact that they’re in a better place and still with you.
This last point is probably what will help you the most.
Regardless of what your beliefs are on life after death, one thing is for sure...this person is still with you because they are part of you.
Sure they’re gone physically, but having them in your life, the memories, the laughs, lessons, and even the loss...has all contributed to the person you are and how you choose to live each day.
The days and years will pass, you will still think about and miss that person every single day.
It’s not necessarily that it gets easier, but more so that you will learn to cope and carry on in your own way. Keep their memories close, carry on traditions they loved, and let them… their energy, love, and the essence of them… be the driving force behind the way you live and the person you are becoming.
Their legacy and love lives on in you.
Sending all the hugs, love, and prayers your way